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As an afterthought, how do our prayers aid in the progression of the soul toward heaven? With respect.

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It never pays to analyze too closely the mechanics of divine grace.

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Thanks for your response. I do not think I am analyzing grace, etc. The docrrine is taught (I think) and should have a basis. Apparently there is a large difference in the belief of one Catholic Church (Latin) with another Catholic Church (Eastern)

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Originally Posted by StuartK
Besides, there are lots of saints whose actual historical existence is dubious. I don't think that they should be pulled from the calendar, or that people should cease asking for their intercessions, because they have been known to be efficacious.


some are getting "de-dubified."

There was an article in my classroom a couple of years ago, which I wish I'd copied, about scholarly work figuring out *which* known saint may have picked up the name "Christopher" over time . . .

hawk

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Christophoros or "Christ-Bearing" is more of a title than a name. Many saints indeed are considered "Christophoroi", and it is easy to see how the title would evolve into the story of the eponymous and possibly apocryphal saint. Nonetheless, there are many unidentified Christ-Bearers, and I am sure that prayers for the intercession of St. Christopher are routed by the Great Prayer Server to the IP (Intercessory Prayer) Address of one of them.

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Originally Posted by PeterPeter
I was thinking about Roman Emperors in particular. St. Constantine the Great, man who killed many people from the Emperor's entourage, who forced people into suicide and was baptized on his deathbed. Or Tzar Nicholas, who was murdered probably because he was a tzar, not because he was a Christian. If canonizations are fallible, people will pray TO them instead of praying FOR them, which I think will be no good for their souls. But this is just my Latin mindset biggrin


Be careful about assuming too much about St. Constantine the Great. Like St. Photios, many untrue things were written about him for political reasons that have later been shown to be untrue by actual historical research and scholarship.

St. Constantine is considered a saint in the Catholic Church as well, via their Eastern Rites.

Christ is risen!
Sbn John

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Originally Posted by ALLEN
Thanks for your response. I do not think I am analyzing grace, etc. The docrrine is taught (I think) and should have a basis. Apparently there is a large difference in the belief of one Catholic Church (Latin) with another Catholic Church (Eastern)


Allen,

Just to clarify.
The difference in belief of what happens to a soul after death is between the Catholic and Orthodox Churches, not between the Latin and Eastern Catholic Churches. All Catholics of whatever liturgical tradition are united by the same faith, therefore; a Catholic must believe that after death a soul either goes to heaven or hell. It is contrary to the Catholic faith to believe that a soul goes to "paradise" or "hades" where the soul receives a foretaste of salvation or condemnation until the General Judgment.

For example, when Saint Josaphat Kuntsevych was canonized by the Catholic Church, he was declared to be in heaven, not in "paradise".

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Quote
ll Catholics of whatever liturgical tradition are united by the same faith, therefore; a Catholic must believe that after death a soul either goes to heaven or hell.


Non placet. You should read our catechism, not to mention our funeral rites. Or are you saying that our rule of prayer is NOT our rule of belief?

I won't be reduced to a Roman Catholic with a cabaret license, thank you.

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:(Greigo
Sorry, I meant the Catholic and Orthodox churches. Looks like we may have to look beyond the filioque issue in order to have one church, as hoped for.
I would be interestred in an Orthodox view of the value of prayers to, or for, the dead if they are not in a place where our prayers can aid them, or that they can pray for us.

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Originally Posted by griego catolico

Allen,

Just to clarify.
The difference in belief of what happens to a soul after death is between the Catholic and Orthodox Churches, not between the Latin and Eastern Catholic Churches. All Catholics of whatever liturgical tradition are united by the same faith, therefore; a Catholic must believe that after death a soul either goes to heaven or hell. It is contrary to the Catholic faith to believe that a soul goes to "paradise" or "hades" where the soul receives a foretaste of salvation or condemnation until the General Judgment.


Wrong. DEAD wrong, in fact.

Catholic teaching is (and has been for centuries) that the dead who are not condemned to hell go to purgatory, where they are purged of their remaining sins and the stains of previously forgiven sins.

The Dogmatic definition of purgatory is vaguer; a place or state where one is not yet admitted to heaven nor condemned to hell.

Catholic teaching also includes that it's possible to be sufficiently bad to be condemned to hell immediately, and also possible to be sufficiently holy that one spends almost no time at all in purgatory, or even is in a state of grace sufficient to go straight to heaven.

Roman Catholic teaching is specifically two judgments: one at death, the other at the end of time.

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Originally Posted by aramis
Originally Posted by griego catolico

Allen,

Just to clarify.
The difference in belief of what happens to a soul after death is between the Catholic and Orthodox Churches, not between the Latin and Eastern Catholic Churches. All Catholics of whatever liturgical tradition are united by the same faith, therefore; a Catholic must believe that after death a soul either goes to heaven or hell. It is contrary to the Catholic faith to believe that a soul goes to "paradise" or "hades" where the soul receives a foretaste of salvation or condemnation until the General Judgment.


Wrong. DEAD wrong, in fact.

Catholic teaching is (and has been for centuries) that the dead who are not condemned to hell go to purgatory, where they are purged of their remaining sins and the stains of previously forgiven sins.

The Dogmatic definition of purgatory is vaguer; a place or state where one is not yet admitted to heaven nor condemned to hell.

Catholic teaching also includes that it's possible to be sufficiently bad to be condemned to hell immediately, and also possible to be sufficiently holy that one spends almost no time at all in purgatory, or even is in a state of grace sufficient to go straight to heaven.

Roman Catholic teaching is specifically two judgments: one at death, the other at the end of time.


Aramis,

I hope you don't think I am denying purgatory.

Souls can either go to heaven directly or via purgatory, if necessary.

Purgatory is not a permanent state/place as are heaven and hell. Souls in purgatory ultimately go to heaven. That is why I didn't mention purgatory in the previous post.

Thank you for your post though.


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In Light for Life, Part I: The Mystery Believed, no mention is made either of general or particular judgment, and purgatory is given a passing mention in a footnote as an "elaboration" of the Western Church; i.e., it is part of the theoria, not the theologia of the Church. The theologia is quite simple: that the souls of the deceased require purification after death, and that prayers for the departed are efficacious. Nothing more has been revealed to us, and everything beyond that is speculation.

But I have always wondered why some Catholics feel the need to have their way on this matter, which is not central to the doctrine of the Church and is a medieval development of the Western Church alone. The Eastern Churches affirm the need for purification, and the efficacy of prayers for the departed--so why demand anything more from us? Why insist that we adopt wholesale a theory which is not integral to our own Tradition? This is one of those areas in which charity should be extended in both directions, and legitimate diversity of opinion permitted. Because there is no denying that it is the Orthodox who have maintained the teaching of the ancient Church, and the Latin Church which has innovated.

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Originally Posted by griego catolico

Aramis,

I hope you don't think I am denying purgatory.

It came across that way. Quite strongly that way.

Last edited by aramis; 05/05/10 07:30 AM.
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If he is, so what?

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To deny purgatory is to deny a teaching of the Church but, I don't want to go off-topic. Purgatory has been discussed in previous threads.

When the Catholic Church canonizes an Eastern Catholic-as it has with St. Josaphat, St Charbel, St. Rafka, etc.-it is a declaration that the person is in heaven.

What I would like to know is if an Eastern Orthodox Christian is glorified by the Orthodox Church, what is the Church declaring in light of the EO teaching that a soul does not enter heaven until the general judgment?

Is the Orthodox saint in heaven or in "paradise" having a foretaste of heaven until the general judgment?


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